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Real-world politicians may suck, but if you think ours suck you may have forgotten about just how bad politicians are in the Star Wars universe. Below are ten of the worst politicians to ever step across the galactic stage.
10. King Rash/Queen Scintel (King of Onderon and Queen of Zygerria) [CANON]
King Sanjay Rash of Onderon and Queen Miraj Scintel of Zygerria are two examples of the evil of petty despots. Rash traded the acquisition of power for supporting Separatist occupation and control of his world. If the oppressive rule of battle droids and summary executions wasn’t bad enough, Rash also had a penchant for wasting delicious fruit by tossing it into his braziers.
Queen Scintel was a real piece of work. Not only the ruler of Zygerria but the overseer of the massive Zygerrian slave trade that involved kidnapping and enslaving entire populations such as the Torgurta of Kiros. Oh, and she also tried to seduce Anakin to be her royal consort. Yuck, yuck, and yuck.
9. Boba Fett (Mandalore of the Mandalorians) [LEGENDS]
Boba Fett wasn’t an evil ruler, but in Legends we has a negligent one. Technically he held the position of Mand’alor, the ruler of the Mandalorian people. But Boba being Boba, he didn’t speak the language, didn’t want to have anything to do with the everyday work of ruling and only showed up o fight when poodoo really hit the fan. More concerned about his stock prices, daddy issues, and finding a replacement leg, Boba Fett is an example of one who neglects his duty.
8. Jar Jar Binks (Bombad General, Representative of Naboo) [CANON]
Defend him all you want. I am not a Prequel hater, but Jar Jar is the worst. He is the epitome of the useful idiot. He shares some similarities to Padme Amidala in his idealism, but where hers was tempered by discernment and realism despite her age, his was not. Jar Jar is a figure who bumbled his way on the battle field, his “heroics” earning him a spot as a representative from Naboo. Serving as a proxy for Senator Amidala, he was manipulated by Palpatine into sponsoring the bill that granted the Supreme Chancellor emergency powers. Thanks, Jar Jar.
7. Mas Amedda (Vice Chair of Republic Galactic Senate, Imperial Grand Vizier and Head of the Imperial Ruling Council )
Complicit in Palpatine’s rise in power and his chief deputy in the realm of politics, Mas Amedda evil in an almost ordinary way. You didn’t see him chopping of limbs with a red lightsaber or blasting civilians with a gun. Instead he sat back in his office and ordered others to do those things in service of the Empire and his Emperor. In the aftermath of the Battle of Endor, Amedda was incredibly ineffectual in maintaining the Empire that he was entrusted to run. Was Amedda always corrupt or did his rise to the heights of power lead him down the dark path? We may never know.
6. Thrackan Sal-Solo (Deputy to Diktat Gallamby, Diktat/Governor-General, Peace Brigade President, Corellian Head of State ) [LEGENDS]
Thrackan may be the best, worst politician in Legends history. There are any number of ways to describe Thrackan but perhaps the best way is by referring to Star Trek. In the Original series episode “Mirror, Mirror” we see an evil Spock with a goatee. Thrackan is “Mirror, Mirror” Han Solo with a splash of Benedict Arnold, Aaron Burr, Marion Barry, and Donald Trump thrown in.
Thrackan had the wealth and privilege that his cousin Han grew up without. He was power hungry from an early age, but he felt his relation to such a scoundrel as Han Solo hurt his career advancement (more likely he was just an a-hole who no one liked). Thrackan rose in the ranks of Imperial leadership on Corellia holding various positions. His career is a tale of repeated reversals of fortune as his evildoing is uncovered, he is punished, and comes back and somehow gets even more power.
A really bad dude.
5. Natasi Daala (Imperial Admiral, Galactic Alliance Head of State) [LEGENDS]
A “close” associate and protege of Grand Moff Tarkin, Daala was the first female Admiral in the Empire and in charge of the Maw Instillation, the Empire’s superweapon skunk works. After the Emperor’s death and Thrawn’s defeat she attempted to gain control of the Empire by calling a meeting of various warlords and assassinating them. In the end her plans didn’t turn out very well and she retreated from the galaxy only to return years later to aid Gilad Pellaeon and help defeat Darth Caedus. She was selected as Galactic Alliance Head of State and well, was about as horrible with power as expected until the even worse Abeloth came along. (On second thought anyone is better than Abeloth. I really hated that whole thing.)
4. Orn Free Ta (Senator for Ryloth-Republic and Empire)
In one of Lucas’ less subtle moves he once again shows greed through gluttony. Like the vile gangster Jabba the Hutt, the Senator from Ryloth puts rotund in the Senate Rotunda. Corrupt to his core, Orn Free Ta is concerned only for his own comfort and power. A boot-licker of Palpatine, he is willing to oppose his own people, including rebel leader Cham Syndulla during both the Clone Wars and the Empire’s rise. Just be happy this guy isn’t as scantilly clad as your typical Twi’lek.
3. Borsk Fey’lya (Provisional Council of Rebel Alliance, New Republic Counciler, New Republic Chief of State) [LEGENDS]
Oh boy, where do you begin with this guy? Meddling in X-Wing pilot romance, using the deaths of Bothans in securing the second Death Star plans any time he opened his mouth, trying to get rid of Ackbar, and generally being a giant impediment to the good and decent leaders in the New Republic. I am not even going to mention his “redemption.” Screw this guy!
2. Count Dooku (Fmr. Jedi Master, Count of Serenno, Confederacy of Independent Systems Head of State)
Sure he may be basically a mid-level boss, but helping to start a galactic civil war, leading the evil Separatist Alliance, murdering your former co-workers, and hanging out with the worst guy in the galaxy makes you a pretty nasty dude. Dooku is a corrupting influence abusing Asajj Ventress’ pain, attempting to convince Obi-Wan to join him, and twisting Savage Opress to be his new weapon. Manipulating his own Separatist Senate while bombing the Republic Senate isn’t exactly in keeping with Senate decorum. In his defense he has some pretty cool stuff–the solar sailer ship is sweet, his lightsaber is elegant, and his monogrammed PJs are top notch.
1. Sheev Palpatine (Senator from Naboo, Supreme Chancellor, Emperor)
Who else could it be really? The Senator from the prosperous if relatively minor world of Naboo, Palpatine conspired behind the scenes as the Sith Lord Darth Sidious to bring conflict to the galaxy that he could use simultaneously rise to power and create the soldiers, equipment, and bases he would need to rule the galaxy with an iron fist.
Gaslighting his “friend” Anakin Skywaker into falling to the Dark Side. Responsible for untolled deaths in the wars against the Separatists and the Rebel Alliance. Responsible for the slaughter and devastation of the Jedi. Enslaving massive numbers of sentients for his war machine.
It is hard to imagine, but as ugly as his exterior appearance is, it is not nearly as twisted and vile as his black heart.
Obi-Wan was right: politicians suck.